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Although this is Australian author Tsiolkas’ fourth novel, it is the first to be published in the U.S. With its raw style, liberal use of profanity and racial epithets, and laserlike focus on the travails of suburban life, it is a down-and-dirty version of Tom Perrotta’s best-selling Little Children (2004). At a barbecue in a Melbourne suburb, a man loses his temper and slaps the child of the host’s friends. This incident unleashes a slew of divisive opinions, pitting friends and families against each other as the child’s parents take the man to court. Told from eight different viewpoints, the novel also deftly fills in disparate backstories encompassing young and old, single and married, gay and straight, as well as depicting how multiculturalism is increasingly impacting the traditional Aussie ethos. For good measure, the author also throws in male vanity, infidelity, and homophobia. Tsiolkas’ in-your-face style is sure to alienate some readers—the child’s parents, for example, are among the book’s most unlikable characters—but his novel, which won the 2009 Commonwealth Prize, fairly radiates with vitality as it depicts the messy complications of family life. --Joanne Wilkinson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
good rhythm, nice twist. first seems too simple but came out deeper than i thought. and well i like sex scenes.Published 5 days ago
Trashy shadow of Franzen's The Corrections.
Noble attempt to cover some contemporary issues; few sympathetic characters. Hard-boiled. Read more
As a former classroom teacher, and one who has dealt with children and parents in a variety of not always positive situations, I was intrigued by the premise of this novel. Read morePublished 1 month ago by now what
I watched the Australian television mini-series, and was so fascinated, I bought the book. It seems to me that while the plot remains the same, the writing is poor. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Music Freak
This is not a great novel. Christos Tsiolkas is much closer to Clive Cussler than to William Faulkner. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Cicero Queens
At one point or another, I wanted to slap nearly all of the POV characters in this book, not to mention several non-POV people as well, including the little boy who actually gets... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
Idiotic. Coarse. Vulgar. This is a truly awful book! I read about a third of it based upon a friend's suggestion but I couldn't finish it. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Becky D Mc